It's real! So hyped for it
With Wasteland 2 released and Torment: Tides of Nemenera on the way, Brian Fargo is returning to yet another classic franchise for his team's next project: The Bard's Tale IV.
After creating his own studio in 2002, Fargo began work on The Bard's Tale, a comical reimagining of the franchise's tropes, that would release in 2004. The Bard's Tale IV is a proper sequel, though, marking the first since 1988's The Bard's Tale III: Thief of Fate.
"This project has always been really personal to me," Fargo told IGN. "It was a game that put both me and Interplay on the map, back in the day. And it's also the franchise that launched inXile."
InXile Entertainment is planning a Kickstarter for The Bard's Tale IV. Details about the game are still light, but Fargo did say the team will be pulling from the original as far as overarching ideas go. From a story perspective, players will be returning to Skara Brae, where it all began. But on the gameplay side of things, Fargo is planning a deviation.
"Traditional turn-based combat," as Fargo calls it, bases turns on varying factors, creating battles in which different characters attacked at different times, often alternating between opposing sides. But in The Bard's Tale IV, teams attack all at once. This increases the pace of the combat, and allows for a different set of tactics than the traditional system might allow.
"There will be plenty of combat diversity and depth," Fargo said. "You look at something like Hearthstone, for example. It's sort of that going back-and-forth process, and you see the complexity and detail and strategy and nuance that can happen. It's really an amazing system. I love those modern influences. I took a lot away from that, and see things we need to do with our combat system."
As for taking another project to Kickstarter, Fargo said crowdsourcing will allow him to make the games he wants to make, for an audience that wants them, without worrying about pleasing a mass market. Although it didn't release under the traditional publishing system, Wasteland 2 sold extremely well right out of the gate.
Faro used broadcast TV stations to illustrate his point. "I prefer to be on Showtime rather than NBC," he said. "That's the kind of entertainment I like to watch, and it's the same thing with these kind of games. I'm able to make something that caters to a crowd that really loves that experience."